Can you believe I waited 24+ years to taste my first ever Banoffee Pie?
A nonfan of bananas, except when featured in this amazing Healthier Banana Bread, I have always steered clear of banana in desserts. I’m sorry, but the thought of mushy bananas in a dessert just made me think of the synthetic banana puddings offered to the recuperating in hospitals.
But I’m willing to admit, I was wrong. Very wrong. Not about the hospital banana pudding being gross, but definitely about banana in desserts like these Banoffee Pies.
It was a rainy evening in Mumbai a little over a month ago. My brother and I sat outside a bustling pizza place, grunting and grumbling. We had been waiting for a table for half an hour. We were hungry, and cranky after a long day, and adamant that this was the only meal that could tie our trip in a neat bow, before we moved out of the city.
Soon we were seated, and our courses arrived promptly; each course upping our spirits a little more. There’s three steps to happiness, they say. Yes. They are – first course, entree and dessert! 😀
After a meal of some of the best pizza we’ve ever eaten, we placed our orders for a slice of Banoffee Pie and Tiramisu (check out my recipe for this divine dessert; and a to-die-for chocolate version too!)
Man, was I shocked when I took my first bite. What the hell was I waiting for all these years? That Banoffee Pie was so good! Perfectly proportionate layers of pastry, toffee sauce, bananas and whipped cream. I couldn’t fault it. My brother too was fascinated. He enthusiastically declared, “The layers of tuna are perfectly even!” “Tuna?!?,” I asked. Somehow TOFFEE + BANANA = TUNA. Get it? Apparently fatigue and excitement can do that to you! 😛
Needless to say, we had a great laugh. (There may have been snorting!) And it has become a bit now; an anecdote we still lose our marbles over.
So when friend and fellow blogger Nicolas, author of Blogtastic Food invited me to join his Vegan Desserts collaboration, I was certain these Vegan Banoffee Pies would be just right! You should check out his recipe for this bomb Vegan Lemon Meringue Pie; it’s the recipe that inspired this collaboration with several bloggers!
This recipe makes 6-8 mini pies. Here’s what you need:
For the Pastry:
- All Purpose Flour – 2 cups (290 g)
- Vegan Margarine – 226 g (2 sticks), cold & cubed / Unsalted Butter – 226 g (2 sticks), cold & cubed
- Icing Sugar – 1/2 cup (70 g)
For the Toffee Sauce:
- Coconut Oil – 2 tbsp / Unsalted Butter – 40 g
- Brown Sugar – 1 cup (180 g)
- Coconut Cream – 200 ml / Heavy Cream – 200 ml
- Salt – 1/2 tsp
For the Whipped Cream:
- Coconut Cream – 1 can (200 ml), refrigerated overnight / Heavy Whipping Cream – 200 ml, refrigerated overnight
- Icing Sugar – 2 tbsp
- Bananas – 3 small, sliced
- Dairy Free Vegan Chocolate – 2 tbsp, shaved / Dark Chocolate – 2 tbsp, shaved
Here’s how you make these blissful Vegan Banoffee Pies:
- Prep: Using a non-stick spray, grease the cavities of a cupcake tray and set aside. Preheat the oven to 180 ºC/355 ºF.
- The Pastry: Sift the flour and icing sugar into a large bowl. Add in the cold vegan margarine/unsalted butter and using your fingers, knead and the crumble the pastry until the margarine / butter is well laced through and incorporated. The pastry should be crumbly, but must hold its own when pressed together. Press the pastry into the prepared greased cupcake moulds and push up the sides until the pastry shell is thick and even. Prick the pastry all over with a fork to prevent puffing up during the baking process, cover with cling film and place in the freezer for 15-20 minutes. Once chilled, peel away the cling film and place the pastry in the oven and bake for 18-20 minutes, or until the pastry is golden and crisp. Cool completely.
- The Toffee Sauce: Melt coconut oil / butter and brown sugar until the brown sugar dissolves completely. Add in the coconut cream / heavy cream, stir and allow the sauce to come to a slow boil. Add in the salt and take it off the heat. As it cools, the sauce will thicken and the flavours will intensify.
- The Whipped Cream: Open the can of chilled coconut milk and scoop out the solid cream that has separated, you may discard the liquid. If using heavy whipping cream, shake well before use. Add in the icing sugar and beat the cream until glossy stiff peaks are formed. Use immediately.
- Assemble: Pour the toffee sauce into the cooled pie shells and top with sliced bananas. Spoon or pipe the whipped cream onto the bananas and drizzle the shaved chocolate over it. Serve as is or chill and serve.
I’ve always believed butter is the key when it comes to pastry. That’s what gives pastry its crumble, crispness and richness, right? I still stand by that, but man is vegan pastry good!
Does it taste different? Sure it does! It is less rich and I found that the texture seems to be more brittle than pastry made using butter. Hence, the thicker pie shells to ensure they didn’t break while filling.
The Toffee Sauce
Oh dear, I think the element I was most skeptical about was using coconut cream to make the toffee sauce. I was worried that the coconut flavour would overpower the rich, amber, caramelized notes of the sauce.
Turns out, coconut cream adds a wonderful lusciousness to the sauce, and the flavours are on point. The caramelization shines through, while the coconutty aroma adds a tropical feel, perfectly complementing the bananas.
The Coconut Whipped Cream
Coconut whipped cream deserves the highest accolades, it is simply glorious! How can I best describe it? Umm, it’s like the delectable froth that collects on the top of a splendid Pina Colada, but subtly sweet and oh-so-creamy!
These Vegan Banoffee Pies are definitely a hit! The key is to balance the sweetness in each element while taking into consideration the sweetness of the bananas. And if well-balanced, these Vegan Banoffee Pies are beyond incredible!
I love mini desserts and I think these mini Vegan Banoffee Pies are just the perfect size, allowing for guilt-free indulgence and the perfect end to a sublime meal.
Should you make these? DUHH! Trust me, you’re going to have many a fan after they’ve tasted one of these delightful treats! ❤
Why Have I Provided a Non-Vegan Recipe as well?
Well, I’m not vegan. Also, a lot of you, my dear readers, do not live in places where vegan ingredients are easily found. I too live in a place where it’s a real task to find vegan ingredients. So I felt it was necessary to make this recipe easy and accessible to all by making sure I provide you with options to recreate these Banoffee Pies in your homes. 🙂
Want to Pin This recipe for later? Here you go…
Psst… If you’d like to, you could come check me out on Pinterest! I pin a tonne of fun stuff – chocolate, lots of dessert, easy weeknight recipes; and home decor (I’m obsessed with home office spaces!)😛
Also, for regular updates on what’s happening in The Foodscape kitchen, follow me on Instagram at @thefoodscape! You’ll love all the deliciousness there, I promise! ❤
Update – 30 September, 2018
You guys! So, I mentioned that this collaboration was with several bloggers, right? Well, here are all the links to their AMAZING vegan desserts. Be warned. Hunger-inducing images await! 😛